Tuesday, December 9

ad free

I think if you've been reading my rants rambles fine words any longer than a few days, you would know how I feel about advertising, marketing, consumerism, insidious marketing tactics, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

Well, I recently received my 3rd offer to 'mention' a product in a post. (Although I have few commenters/low following I seem to get an okay number of hits. But it freaks me out that they somehow know this *shivers*) Anyway, in exchange for this mention, I would receive said product for free. One of these products was okay by me and I would have loved to have received it. But I declined.

And I was pleased to come across this little site that found me just at the right time, expressing my sentiments exactly.

A few snippets:

Many bloggers say they will not let the ads affect the editorial content. I question this statement. Can you guarantee that? And knowing that other people are offered money to "mention" a product on their site don't you start to wonder whether someone is recommending something in an unbiased way? We live in a culture where advertisers directly influence and in some cases control and create the culture at large. Honesty of the writing is affected when corporate interests are paying the bills. This has been proven time and time again in the case of periodicals, films, and television. The more ads that appear on blogs the less we will all trust in honesty of the medium as a whole.

What about taking advertisers money and giving a large portion to charity, thusly transforming the negative into something positive (effectively thumbing our nose at the corporation)?

It seems at first glance a viable option, but as I sit with it I still have some problems. This has to do with what kind of energy I want to put out into the world, and that I choose to be accountable for all of it. I do not wish to contribute more to the rampant consumeristic culture that we already find ourselves in.

I believe that advertising in our culture should be subject to appropriateness and restraint (as previously mentioned). And I think it is important for us to question it's use and it's impact on us at every turn. I do not see my questioning as a negative thing but instead a positive one that empowers me and (by sharing my journey) potentially others to live in a conscious manner and make educated decisions.
So this is the little logo you'll find, on my side bar.


  1. Good for you! I thought about doing google ads but felt very uncomfortable with it. I prefer ad-free spaces, too.

    I certainly have never received offers to mention products, though. You must be more popular than me! ha ha

  2. Mon - This is a tough one. I don't do ads either, but I do visit many blogs that I respect that do. One thing about google-ads is that it is anonymous (you're not in contact with the advertiser) and you customize what type of products can show up on your site, so in a way that means you aren't beholden to them, and possibly your readers are seeing an ad for a product they actually do need/want. But I just don't like the clutter it ads to sites, so I have stayed away.

    However, I do receive free books from authors/publishers, and that can feel tricky at times. I ask for a synopsis first, so that I can see if the book is even relevant to my site and then I am always clear that I make no promises to review it. I view myself as more of a recommender than a reviewer, so I only do reviews on books that I actually like and think my readers would too. So that is how I handle it, and most of the books I am sent, I never post on (and for the record, only one of the books on my current children's list was sent to me by a publisher...)

  3. It certainly is tricky. And it's up to the individual how they feel about it and what they choose to do.

    I dislike Google ads because of the whole general advertising bombarding us enough as it reason. And the randomness of it I dislike too though. I would rather a single ad from a company I knew was ethical, green, whatever was important to me.

    Books are very difficult. They're not quite o the same page as a plastic toy for example. As long as the blogger was clear and upfront that the book was sent for review.

  4. Some excellent points you make about this issue and I agree wholeheartedly.

    I've been thinking of adding that little badge to my blog (I also happen to love owls. But that's not the point).

    I often mention brands I like/use, but have never been approached by anyone to talk about any kind of product, and I would refuse to do so. Also, I think bloggers need to state this up-front if they are doing this - and I know of some that have.

    However, as far as products go, I do think book reviews are slightly different, (I haven't been approached for these either), and I may be slightly biased because of what I do for a living. But an honest book (or art) review is, to me anyway, different to product placement, or product reviews.

    Advertorial is something I'm generally uncomfortable with, and it gives a blog a slightly weighted agenda. It's nice to visit blog spaces that are unencumbered by ploys to stimulate our sense of lack, inadequacy, and desire like the rest of advertising world.

  5. Well put Doc!

    And books are for me along the lines of, as you say, art, along with films and plays.

    Yeah, I like owls too. That had no influence! *chuckle*

  6. AGHH. It ate my comment. Frugglebug.


No comment is too long or short around here.

Comment moderation on posts older than 7 days.